Life is full of haters
Haters are people who despise your work and actively seek to undermine your efforts, personally or professionally. Don’t confuse a hater with an advocate. Advocates alert us of our limitations and shortcomings, and these people help keep us in reality. Reality is a good and welcomed thing. A hater's optics are skewed (so their rationale may or may not be grounded in reality). Their objective is to undermine your creativity and credibility. If you have an audience, you will accumulate haters. This reality is unavoidable. The marketplace is competitive and an entrepreneur needs to be aware of these foes.
Haters come in subtle or not subtle forms. Someone are bold enough to say to your face that they wish your failure and spread false narratives about you and your brand.
Successful companies will attract haters
Let’s examine the case of Gab, a social network site. Some have criticized the site as a haven for extreme, far right views. I do not have a Gab account nor have I read any content on Gab. Expect no commentary from me on its subscribers, political or social views; we will only examine how Gab dealt with opposition.
Gab was identified as a haven for racist and discriminatory rhetoric in the wake of the October 27, 2018 synagogue shooting in Pittsburg, PA. Two days later on October 29, GoDaddy terminated Gab’s web hosting account. The site went dead. The mainstream media and talking heads went in full storm to document the event.
Several providers such as GoDaddy, MasterCard and other Patreon refused to continue business with Gab. Here is the full list of merchants, according to a Gab tweet.
How did they choose to deal with the de-platforming? Since they had a large and significant base, they found new service providers. On November 4, Gab was back online. Of course, many sites such as 48 Hours were not happy to hear the news.
Gab identified their resources, found new service providers and continued operations.
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How Gab overcame all
Gab was able to overcame their obstacles. Again, I’m not saying Gab should or should not be in business, that is a separate conversation.
This article is not designed to create a machiavellian strategy on how to destroy or thwart haters. Look elsewhere if you’re looking for that.
Leaders like yourself are eagles whom soar in the air. Turkeys, like your haters and unproductive and stay on the ground. A true leader never picks fights on unfamiliar territory. Stay in the air and don’t bother with activities on the ground. That being said, you can’t pretend or ignore the cackles from your haters. Here are some tips to help weather through the storm of haters.
No one kicks a dead dog.
If you are making an impact and influencing others, expect resistance from others. Your work threatens them or interests. By then you most likely have a strong following. You’re onto something good if a cage or two is rattled.
Haters strengthen your resolve.
This is the time you need to ask yourself if the struggle is worth the heartache. If it is, then lean into it. It’s all part of the experience. Laugh in the face of the cat calling, mean tweets and smear campaigns. If you know you are providing solid and quality content to your fans and consumers, then expect people trying to oppose your hard work.
Have a rock steady team.
These people are honest and loyal to your mission. Make sure these people will tell you the whole truth. They should not hesitate to tell you the good, bad and ugly. You also need people who are willing to go to bat for your organization when push comes to shove.
Messing up is okay.
In business, like in life, there will be times where you will make colossal errors. Mistakes happen. Perhaps you were wrong to do or say something, and everyone was quick to point it out. These moments are feeding ground for haters. Use this moment not as an obstacle but as a reminder of your humanity. Acknowledge the mistake (if necessary) and keep it moving. Use the experience to grow and develop both personally and professionally.
Do not apologize if you did nothing wrong.
You spoke with your team about the incident. You even got feedback from your fans and customers about the situation. Do not apologize if you did nothing wrong. Do not do it. If you apologize and posture weakness, then you make yourself vulnerable to further attacks.
Find ways to relax and destress.
Part of being human recognizes that you need moments to rest and recharge. As much as we want to work 12 hour days, 7 days a week, our mind and body strongly disagrees. Choose something that work well for you to cause ease and relaxation. If your team has been working hard with no breaks, encourage your crew to also get some R&R. Just find something that calms you and brings you relaxation.
Have you overcome an incident where a hater was trying to destroy your business?
Do you have a relaxation strategy that helps you to stay calm in the midst of a storm?
I would love to read it, please let me know in the comment section below.